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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Oct 26, 2011 10:45am
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Occupy Wall Street issues to consider

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Here are some important issues the 99% crowd should consider:

Peace and Reconciliation Movement discussion about Our Wars

20th century American service jobs were not "flipping burgers" jobs

Net Neutrality discussion - with Updates

Sign the Petition to Free artist Ai Weiwei

Rapture? or Reality Check?

Global Warming and Climate Change discussion

Halt the sale & planting of Monsanto’s Roundup Ready® GMO seeds


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Last, but not least:

Grateful Dead and The Occupy Wall Street Movement

Monte's Taper Handbook
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I'm in The 99% Crowd! — We're Occupying Fort Collins Peacefully!

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The 99% Occupation in Fort Collins • NW Corner of College & Maple • Join Us!
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The Rich 1% are Out-Sourcing Our Jobs! Bring Our Manufacturing Jobs Home Now!

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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Oct 29, 2011 6:37am
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Re: OWS issues - cancer risks for Koch Bros profits

Two of the Richest People On The Planet
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Cancer Risks for Koch Brothers Profits

David and Charles Koch are tied in 18th place on the Forbes Billionaires List. This year's list of Billionaires broke records in size (1,210 billionaires) and total net worth ($4.5 trillion). Each of The Koch Brothers is worth $22 Billion!

We can't defeat the Kochs without your help. Don't let these 1 percenters suppress voters.

The Ed Schultz Show: Koch Brothers and Cancer in Arkansas

Huffington Post: Koch-Owned Georgia-Pacific Plant Linked To High Cancer Rates, Film Alleges

AlterNet: New Film Exposes Connection Between the Kochs and a Small Community Dying of Cancer

Greenpeace: Suffering in the Shadow of Koch’s Dangerous Chemical Plants

Think Progress: Film Alleges Koch Industries’ Dumping of Toxic Chemicals is Killing People in Arkansas

The Nation: The Kochs and Cancer In A Small Town

KPFK Background Briefing: Ian Masters interviews Robert Greenwald

The Young Turks: Koch Brothers Exposed for Cancer Causing Pollution

Thom Hartmann The Big Picture: Koch connection to cancer deaths?

The Thom Hartmann Program: Killer Koch Cancer Connection

Blue Arkansas: Koch Industries Gave Thousands To Mike Ross While Poisoning His Constituents

FireDogLake: Film Shows Epidemic of Cancer Downstream from Koch Industries Plant in Arkansas

Facing South (N.C.): Koch Industries plant linked to cancer epidemic in Arkansas community (video)

The Raw Story: Film exposes cancer epidemic downstream from Koch Industries plant

DeSmogBlog: Koch Brothers Exposed: Cancer Risk In Crossett Arkansas Blamed On Georgia Pacific

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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Nov 8, 2011 10:06am
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Re: OWS issues - IRS urged to probe The Koch-Cain Connection

The Koch-Cain Connection

IRS Urged To Probe Ties Between Cain Campaign and Billionaire Koch Brothers
http://www.democracynow.org/2011/11/8/koch_cain_connection_irs_probe_ties

The campaign of Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain took another hit on Monday [Nov 7] when a fourth woman emerged to accuse him of sexual harassment in the 1990s. But the allegations of sexual harassment are not the only controversies surrounding Cain. Also on Monday, the Wisconsin-based Center for Media and Democracy filed a complaint asking the Internal Revenue Service to investigate whether one of his top aides has used tens of thousands of dollars from a tax-exempt non-profit organization to fund Cain’s political activities. Citing leaked financial records, the Center says Cain’s campaign manager, Mark Block, used at least $40,000 dollars from his group, Prosperity USA, to pay for Cain’s private jets, air travel and computers when he was exploring a presidential bid. Block founded Prosperity USA just last year. The leaked records cited in the complaint also suggest extensive financial ties between Block’s Prosperity USA, the Cain campaign, and the right-wing advocacy group founded by the billionaire David Koch, Americans for Prosperity. Block stepped down from heading the Wisconsin arm of "Americans for Prosperity" to run Cain’s campaign. We speak with Lisa Graves, executive director of the Center for Media and Democracy, about its request that the IRS to investigate the group’s tax-exempt status, and other ways Block may have been funneling money to political campaigns.

7 Nov 2011 DemocracyNow interview with Center for Media and Democracy - 09:00
http://www.democracynow.org/2011/11/8/koch_cain_connection_irs_probe_ties



This post was modified by dead-head_Monte on 2011-11-08 18:06:41

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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Nov 8, 2011 10:20am
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Re: OWS issues - Koch Bros suppressing Voters Rights

Are the Koch brothers denying your right to vote?

Koch brothers exposed by Robert Greenwald and Brave New Foundation

Through their web of political influence, billionaire political operatives Charles and David Koch have bought access to democracy's lifeblood: free and fair elections. The Kochs have funded efforts to thwart 21 million Americans from voting and Koch dollars helped write and propose voting suppression bills in 38 states.

04:18 - Uploaded to YouTube by brave_new_foundation on Nov 3, 2011
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dwOTm3ShQh0



This post was modified by dead-head_Monte on 2011-11-08 18:20:12

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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Nov 1, 2011 1:06pm
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Re: OWS issues - Koch Bros skeptic agrees climate change is real

01 Nov 2011 - http://www.democracynow.org/2011/11/1/headlines#16
• Koch Bros-funded Climate Change Skeptic Admits Global Warming is Real!

A prominent skeptic of global warming has admitted that climate change is real and now says that the rising levels of greenhouse gases could have a disastrous impact on the world. Richard Muller, who works at the University of California, Berkeley, and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, said he spent the last two years studying the climate data. He found that the land is 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than in the 1950s. Muller’s change of heart has made headlines in part because of who funds his research. One-quarter of the $600,000 of his research funding came from the right-wing Charles Koch Foundation.
http://www.chron.com/news/article/Skeptic-finds-he-now-agrees-global-warming-is-real-2243593.php
Houston Chronicle
Skeptic finds he now agrees global warming is real
SETH BORENSTEIN, AP Science Writer
Updated 02:42 a.m., Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A prominent physicist and skeptic of global warming spent two years trying to find out if mainstream climate scientists were wrong. In the end, he determined they were right: Temperatures really are rising rapidly.

The study of the world's surface temperatures by Richard Muller was partially bankrolled by a foundation connected to global warming deniers. He pursued long-held skeptic theories in analyzing the data. He was spurred to action because of "Climategate," a British scandal involving hacked emails of scientists.

Yet he found that the land is 1.6 degrees Fahrenheit (1 degree Celsius) warmer than in the 1950s. Those numbers from Muller, who works at the University of California, Berkeley, and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, match those by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA.

He said he went even further back, studying readings from Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson. His ultimate finding of a warming world, to be presented at a conference Monday, is no different from what mainstream climate scientists have been saying for decades.

What's different, and why everyone from opinion columnists to cable TV 's satirical "The Daily Show" is paying attention is who is behind the study.

One-quarter of the $600,000 to do the research came from the Charles Koch Foundation, whose founder is a major funder of skeptic groups and the conservative tea party movement. The Koch brothers, Charles and David, run a large privately held company involved in oil and other industries, producing sizable greenhouse gas emissions.

Muller's research team carefully examined two chief criticisms by skeptics. One is that weather stations are unreliable; the other is that cities, which create heat islands, were skewing the temperature analysis.

"The skeptics raised valid points and everybody should have been a skeptic two years ago," Muller said in a telephone interview. "And now we have confidence that the temperature rise that had previously been reported had been done without bias."

Muller said that he came into the study "with a proper skepticism," something scientists "should always have. I was somewhat bothered by the fact that there was not enough skepticism" before.

There is no reason now to be a skeptic about steadily increasing temperatures, Muller wrote recently in The Wall Street Journal's editorial pages, a place friendly to climate change skeptics. Muller did not address in his research the cause of global warming. The overwhelming majority of climate scientists say it's man-made from the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil. Nor did his study look at ocean warming, future warming and how much of a threat to mankind climate change might be.

Still, Muller said it makes sense to reduce the carbon dioxide created by fossil fuels.

"Greenhouse gases could have a disastrous impact on the world," he said. Still, he contends that threat is not as proven as the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says it is.

On Monday, Muller was taking his results — four separate papers that are not yet published or peer-reviewed, but will be, he says — to a conference in Santa Fe, New Mexico, expected to include many prominent skeptics as well as mainstream scientists.

"Of course he'll be welcome," said Petr Chylek of Los Alamos National Lab, a noted skeptic and the conference organizer. "The purpose of our conference is to bring people with different views on climate together, so they can talk and clarify things."

Shawn Lawrence Otto, author of the book "Fool Me Twice" that criticizes science skeptics, said Muller should expect to be harshly treated by global warming deniers. "Now he's considered a traitor. For the skeptic community, this isn't about data or fact. It's about team sports. He's been traded to the Indians. He's playing for the wrong team now."

And that started on Sunday, when a British newspaper said one of Muller's co-authors, Georgia Tech climate scientist Judith Curry, accused Muller of another Climategate-like scandal and trying to "hide the decline" of recent global temperatures.

The Associated Press contacted Curry on Sunday afternoon and she said in an email that Muller and colleagues "are not hiding any data or otherwise engaging in any scientifically questionable practice."

The Muller "results unambiguously show an increase in surface temperature since 1960," Curry wrote Sunday. She said she disagreed with Muller's public relations efforts and some public comments from Muller about there no longer being a need for skepticism.

Muller's study found that skeptics' concerns about poor weather station quality didn't skew the results of his analysis because temperature increases rose similarly in reliable and unreliable weather stations. He also found that while there is an urban heat island effect making cities warmer, rural areas, which are more abundant, are warming, too.

Among many climate scientists, the reaction was somewhat of a yawn.

"After lots of work he found exactly what was already known and accepted in the climate community," said Jerry North, a Texas A&M University atmospheric sciences professor who headed a National Academy of Sciences climate science review in 2006. "I am hoping their study will have a positive impact. But some folks will never change."

Chris Field, a Carnegie Institution scientist who is chief author of an upcoming intergovernmental climate change report, said Muller's study "may help the world's citizens focus less on whether climate change is real and more on smart options for addressing it."

Some of the most noted scientific skeptics are no longer saying the world isn't warming. Instead, they question how much of it is man-made, view it as less a threat and argue it's too expensive to do something about, Otto said.

Skeptical MIT scientist Richard Lindzen said it is a fact and nothing new that global average temperatures have been rising since 1950, as Muller shows. "It's hard to see how any serious scientist (skeptical, denier or believer — frequently depending on the exact question) will view it otherwise," he wrote in an email.

In a brief email statement, the Koch Foundation noted that Muller's team didn't examine ocean temperature or the cause of warming and said it will continue to fund such research. "The project is ongoing and entering peer review, and we're proud to support this strong, transparent research," said foundation spokeswoman Tonya Mullins.

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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Nov 4, 2011 10:27am
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Re: OWS issues - new report agrees climate change is real

• 03 Nov 2011- http://www.news-leader.com/article/20111104/NEWS07/111040334/Carbon-emissions-global-warming

Report says Global carbon dioxide output soaring

WASHINGTON, Associated Press — The global output of heat-trapping carbon dioxide jumped by the biggest amount on record, the U.S. Department of Energy calculated, a sign of how feeble the world’s efforts are at slowing man-made global warming.

The new figures for 2010 mean that levels of greenhouse gases are higher than the worst case scenario outlined by climate experts just four years ago.

“The more we talk about the need to control emissions, the more they are growing,” said John Reilly, co-director of MIT’s Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change.

The world pumped about 564 million more tons (512 million metric tons) of carbon into the air in 2010 than it did in 2009. That’s an increase of 6 percent. That amount of extra pollution eclipses the individual emissions of all but three countries — China, the United States and India, the world’s top producers of greenhouse gases.

It is a “monster” increase that is unheard of, said Gregg Marland, a professor of geology at Appalachian State University, who has helped calculate Department of Energy figures in the past.

Extra pollution in China and the U.S. account for more than half the increase in emissions last year, Marland said.

“It’s a big jump,” said Tom Boden, director of the Energy Department’s Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center at Oak Ridge National Lab. “From an emissions standpoint, the global financial crisis seems to be over.”

Boden said that in 2010 people were traveling, and manufacturing was back up worldwide, spurring the use of fossil fuels, the chief contributor of man-made climate change.

India and China are huge users of coal. Burning coal is the biggest carbon source worldwide and emissions from that jumped nearly 8 percent in 2010.

“The good news is that these economies are growing rapidly so everyone ought to be for that, right?” Reilly said Thursday. “Broader economic improvements in poor countries has been bringing living improvements to people. Doing it with increasing reliance on coal is imperiling the world.”

In 2007, when the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued its last large report on global warming, it used different scenarios for carbon dioxide pollution and said the rate of warming would be based on the rate of pollution. Boden said the latest figures put global emissions higher than the worst case projections from the climate panel. Those forecast global temperatures rising between 4 and 11 degrees Fahrenheit by the end of the century with the best estimate at 7.5 degrees.

Even though global warming skeptics have attacked the climate change panel as being too alarmist, scientists have generally found their predictions too conservative, Reilly said. He said his university worked on emissions scenarios, their likelihood, and what would happen. The IPCC’s worst case scenario was only about in the middle of what MIT calculated are likely scenarios.

Chris Field of Stanford University, head of one of the IPCC’s working groups, said the panel’s emissions scenarios are intended to be more accurate in the long term and are less so in earlier years. He said the question now among scientists is whether the future is the panel’s worst case scenario “or something more extreme.”

“Really dismaying,” Granger Morgan, head of the engineering and public policy department at Carnegie Mellon University, said of the new figures. “We are building up a horrible legacy for our children and grandchildren.”

But Reilly and University of Victoria climate scientist Andrew Weaver found something good in recent emissions figures. The developed countries that ratified the 1997 Kyoto Protocol greenhouse gas limiting treaty have reduced their emissions overall since then and have achieved their goals of cutting emissions to about 8 percent below 1990 levels. The U.S. did not ratify the agreement.

In 1990, developed countries produced about 60 percent of the world’s greenhouse gases, now it’s probably less than 50 percent, Reilly said.

“We really need to get the developing world because if we don’t, the problem is going to be running away from us,” Weaver said. “And the problem is pretty close from running away from us.”


This post was modified by dead-head_Monte on 2011-11-04 17:27:14

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Poster: dead-head_Monte Date: Oct 29, 2011 9:24am
Forum: occupywallstreet Subject: Re: OWS issues - the $400 billion business of higher education

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PBS Frontline investigation

For-profit colleges and universities: the $400 billion business of higher education is booming

Even in lean times, the $400 billion business of higher education is booming. Nowhere is this more true than in one of the fastest-growing -- and most controversial -- sectors of the industry: for-profit colleges and universities that cater to non-traditional students, often confer degrees over the Internet, and, along the way, successfully capture billions of federal financial aid dollars.

In College, Inc., correspondent Martin Smith investigates the promise and explosive growth of the for-profit higher education industry. Through interviews with school executives, government officials, admissions counselors, former students and industry observers, this film explores the tension between the industry --which says it's helping an underserved student population obtain a quality education and marketable job skills -- and critics who charge the for-profits with churning out worthless degrees that leave students with a mountain of debt.

At the center of it all stands a vulnerable population of potential students, often working adults eager for a university degree to move up the career ladder. FRONTLINE talks to a former staffer at a California-based for-profit university who says she was under pressure to sign up growing numbers of new students. "I didn't realize just how many students we were expected to recruit," says the former enrollment counselor. "They used to tell us, you know, 'Dig deep. Get to their pain. Get to what's bothering them. So, that way, you can convince them that a college degree is going to solve all their problems.'"

Graduates of another for-profit school -- a college nursing program in California -- tell FRONTLINE that they received their diplomas without ever setting foot in a hospital. Graduates at other for-profit schools report being unable to find a job, or make their student loan payments, because their degree was perceived to be of little worth by prospective employers. One woman who enrolled in a for-profit doctorate program in Dallas later learned that the school never acquired the proper accreditation she would need to get the job she trained for. She is now sinking in over $200,000 in student debt.

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The biggest player in the for-profit sector is the University of Phoenix -- now the largest college in the US with total enrollment approaching half a million students. Its revenues of almost $4 billion last year, up 25 percent from 2008, have made it a darling of Wall Street. Former top executive of the University of Phoenix Mark DeFusco told FRONTLINE how the company's business-approach to higher education has paid off: "If you think about any business in America, what business would give up two months of business -- just essentially close down?" he asks. "[At the University of Phoenix], people go to school all year round. We start classes every five weeks. We built campuses by a freeway because we figured that's where the people were."

"The education system that was created hundreds of years ago needs to change," says Michael Clifford, a major education entrepreneur who speaks with FRONTLINE. Clifford, a former musician who never attended college, purchases struggling traditional colleges and turns them into for-profit companies. "The big opportunity," he says, "is the inefficiencies of some of the state systems, and the ability to transform schools and academic programs to better meet the needs of the people that need jobs."

"From a business perspective, it's a great story," says Jeffrey Silber, a senior analyst at BMO Capital Markets, the investment banking arm of the Bank of Montreal. "You're serving a market that's been traditionally underserved. ... And it's a very profitable business -- it generates a lot of free cash flow."

And the cash cow of the for-profit education industry is the federal government. Though they enroll 10 percent of all post-secondary students, for-profit schools receive almost a quarter of federal financial aid. But Department of Education figures for 2009 show that 44 percent of the students who defaulted within three years of graduation were from for-profit schools, leading to serious questions about one of the key pillars of the profit degree college movement: that their degrees help students boost their earning power. This is a subject of increasing concern to the Obama administration, which, last month, remade the federal student loan program, and is now proposing changes that may make it harder for the for-profit colleges to qualify.

"One of the ideas the Department of Education has put out there is that in order for a college to be eligible to receive money from student loans, it actually has to show that the education it's providing has enough value in the job market so that students can pay their loans back," says Kevin Carey of the Washington think tank Education Sector. "Now, the for-profit colleges, I think this makes them very nervous," Carey says. "They're worried because they know that many of their members are charging a lot of money; that many of their members have students who are defaulting en masse after they graduate. They're afraid that this rule will cut them out of the program. But in many ways, that's the point."

FRONTLINE also finds that the regulators that oversee university accreditation are looking closer at the for-profits and, in some cases, threatening to withdraw the required accreditation that keeps them eligible for federal student loans. "We've elevated the scrutiny tremendously," says Dr. Sylvia Manning, president of the Higher Learning Commission, which accredits many post-secondary institutions. "It is really inappropriate for accreditation to be purchased the way a taxi license can be purchased. ...When we see any problematic institution being acquired and being changed we put it on a short leash."

Watch the Full Program on-line